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    Tropical Sunset

    Always Smile

    By Pete and Miriam Mathis

    January 31, 2013

    Available languages: Español

    • María Luisa Cruz

      Thank you for these readings and poems. There are many people who have survived terrible diseases like leprosy because God is good and he has helped them. We can only smile again through trusting in God and experiencing his faithfulness. The Lord Jesus has authority and lordship over our lives; he is greater than any sickness, problem or circumstance. Being a child of God is what makes the difference. If we know we are loved, forgiven and saved through the sacrifice of our God, we can face daily challenges with courage. Congratulations for these readings which help us to grow as people. I will remember this poem's advice: SMILE.

    • Patsy Velez

      What a challenge and great outlook. My husband always likes to tell people who are cleaning the floors, or other daily jobs, that they are doing a great job. Then he says to me: "See, that didn't cost any thing to make their day!" Same for a smile. Thanks for sharing that.

    • Deon pillay

      Keep up the Good work and may the lord strengthen you from day to day.

    • Pat Fros

      What a great story and poem and so true! Thank you for sharing! Pat

    • Nicole Solomon

      Thank you for sharing that beautiful and special poem with us. I have been frustrated with a medical situation, and to see this article really helped me to see actually how fortunate and blessed I am. I am going to use this poem to stay joyful and think of others no matter what is put in front of me. Thank you!

    Over Christmas we visited Santa Isabel, a leper colony in East Paraguay where cured lepers live. These people, now elderly, were released into society but found themselves rejected wherever they went. Eventually they returned to their old hovels (or the wards) and are lovingly assisted by Catholic nuns. It is a pitiful sight to see them with missing fingers, arms, or legs, and yet they radiate joy. What a challenge to us!

    We met Tomas, now close to 80 years old, who came to Santa Isabel at the age of five with his father—both infected with the dreaded disease. His father, a Salvation Army officer, bravely continued his work of spreading the good news of Jesus Christ, although his mission field was now limited to those within the compound. In the hallway of Tomas’ ward we spied this poem mounted on the wall. It touched our hearts.

    The poem and contagious joy were too good to keep to ourselves, so here they are for you.


    Always Give a Smile...a poem from the Santa Isabel Leper colony

    to children
    in homage to
    their innocence...

    to the weak
    to give them courage...

    to the sick
    to soothe their pain...

    to the sad
    to spread to them
    your joy...

    to the bitter
    to sweeten
    their days...

    to the egoistic
    to teach them to give...

    to everyone
    because a smile
    does not cost anything
    and yet can do

    Hermana Cecilia Prezioso HSP